What is E-learning and its importance in regard to the Biopharma industry


E-learning is defined as the delivery of content through the use of electronic media. Information is delivered via sources like the following: the internet, extranets, intranets, video tape, audio tape, interactive TV, CD or a satellite broadcast.

Alternative terms like technology based learning and web-based learning are sometimes used instead of the term eLearning. Elearning is used and defined differently by various organisations and user groups. As time progresses the world of eLearning is constantly changing and evolving.

ELearning is fast becoming a favoured supplementary tool in a lot of settings and applications that have a need for any type of training or learning. It offers users many advantages over the traditional class room based learning method.

Users are provided with:

  • Online flexibility where users can work at their own pace to a certain degree
  • Higher retention of content due to its personalised learning approach
  • Real-world interactivity
  • Effective learning tools
  • Immediate access to timely information
  • Less intimidating in comparison to an instructor led class-room setting
  • ELearning is considered to be cost effective and offers great value for money

ELearning has revolutionised the way organisations operate. Industries like the biopharma sector have taken on eLearning as a necessary tool in the operation of staff recruitment and training.

Here is a look at just some of the reasons why eLearning is becoming an important factor for industries such as the biopharma sector:

Significantly reduces training costs

Whether it’s done online or not, producing learning content can be considerably expensive. However, with eLearning the return on investment improves each time the course content is used. Major savings are also made because of decreased travel expenses and the reduction of course material needed.

The following is a typical example of where eLearning proves to be extremely cost effective for any biopharma company. Imagine that there is a group of employees that need to be trained up in how to arrange equipment in a sterile environment such as an operating room. By creating that scenario online and letting the employees learn that way, the company doesn’t have to worry about costs associated with the setting up, the operating or the cleaning up of an actual fake operating room.

Increase in productivity levels

Companies can control the effect that necessary staff training has on production levels. ELearning can deliver staff training during down times as it is not bound by geography or time restrictions. ELearning is an effective tool in the delivery of information and will provide staff with the skills and expertise that will enhance their performance.


With classroom training, there is a risk that individual trainers can deliver differing information. ELearning provides a standardised process and a level of consistency that is unmatched when it comes to delivering a consistent message to everyone. This can be especially useful for staff induction training when information needs to be given to a large group of people.

ELearning will always play a significant role in the delivery of information to employees in the Biopharma industry. With the ever increasing availability of eLearning tools and a parallel increase in peoples familiarity with them, the popularity of eLearning is only going to increase.



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Nick Barnett

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